Monday, November 23, 2009

“While on a patterncutting course in London I had the idea to create wearable accessories.My MA thesis was on the use of craft as a model for job creation, based on beading. As part of my internship, I worked with beaders and from that I imagined products, which I could develop with beaders in a contemporary way. The designs utilise traditional and local beadwork skills, giving the beadwork an unusual form while exploring new techniques. My love is for the fashion side of the product, and I make the crafters skills saleable through an original brand.” – designer Robyn Lidsky – Ruby

“I learnt to craft at the Sabata Church in the Bongweni area of Khayelitsha on Saturdays. Connie my friend took me with her. Dr Steyn the priest and members of the church taught us to bead. I received a certificate as a beader. They also taught me how to make a business and gave me money to start on my own. Afterwards Connie and I went to Cape Town because friends recommended Robyn, who was looking for beaders. Now I am the coordinator of the crafter group, Ruby Beading Circle that crafts for the Ruby label. For new products I develop the samples and prototypes from Robyn’s sketches before instructing the other crafters. It is imaginative work and it sometimes takes four days to make one sample. I have a lot of freedom in my work, which I like.” – crafter Andita Shaweni

Extract taken from nineTAKES – The Fashion Fusion Project, published by Channel F Publishing, R200. Available: or on 011 442 7812

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